Well-known local retailer Chris Ward has extended his premises to open a new ceramics and tiling showroom on Denton Avenue in Grantham. He has given us some advice below on different types of tiles including ceramic tiles, glazed floor and wall tiles, porcelain tiles, quarry and stone tiles. The showroom incidentally is fantastic.
This is a generic term that refers to any fired clay product. Ceramic tiles are easy to clean, hygienic, colour fast, light fast, hard wearing, won’t support the spread of flame, are not damaged by water, highly suited for asthma and allergy sufferers, and are very cost effective. Slight colour variations will occur between production batches so always order sufficient for the whole job and check random tiles before fixing to ensure that all tiles are the same batch and match your expectations
Glazed Floor & Wall Tiles
These are easy to clean, scratch resistant and impact resistant. They come in a huge variety of sizes, shapes and designs and can be used on both walls and floors. Different surface textures are used to provide additional slip resistance and aesthetic appeal but can make the floor harder to clean. The glaze will eventually start to wear but if you match the tiles wear rating with the environment in which it will be fixed you will have decades of trouble free life.
Porcelain is the hardest of all ceramic tile products it can be used on walls and floors, inside and out and can be glazed or unglazed. These tiles have few vices, with the appropriate maintenance the unglazed variety are expected to have a working life of perhaps a 1,000 years! Glazed porcelain has the same characteristics as glazed floor tiles but is more impact resistant and suitable for external use.
What is Porcelain?
Porcelain is a material that makes stunning tiles with its beautiful translucency, toughness and strength. It is created using a mixture of sands, clay and other materials which are heated up to temperatures as high as 1,400 degrees Celsius.
Porcelain gets its name from the old Italian word ‘porcellana’, which means ‘cowrie shell’, due to its resemblance to a shell’s translucent surface. In some English-speaking countries it is sometimes informally referred to as ‘china’ as the birth place of porcelain making was China – many thousands of years ago.
Quarry tiles are made from natural clay and are usually used for flooring. They are very robust and have the potential to last for centuries. They come in a limited number of colours (ranging from brick red, buffs, blacks and brown/red/purple mingles) and a limited number of sizes. They are slightly porous and can suffer from mild staining if not sealed.
A huge range of types, sizes and surface finishes are available All will require sealing (see stone tile advice). Maintenance is the key to keeping the floor looking good with a potential for a long working life. The seals can last for 5 to 10 years but considerably less if not cared for or if used in showers. Stone is more susceptible to fracture and it should be fixed over an uncoupling membrane on new screeds or timber floors. Fixing costs are generally higher than ceramic tiles.
Glass tiles provide tiling with additional design possibilities. Glass should only be used on walls because of the chance of chipping leaving sharp edges.
If you are in Grantham do pay Chris Ward Carpets and Hardflooring a visit - you are sure to receive warm welcome.
Member since: 9th July 2012
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